There are a lot of ghosts in the world, but they've nothing to do with these artists. We don't know if it's laziness when it comes to finding a name for their musical projects, but the word “ghost” appears in an endless string of band names recently. If we had included the metal bands that use the term, the list would literally have been endless - so we're focussing on the indie side of things. Here we give you ten names that made the ghostly their reason for being, their visiting card; without having to dress up as Goths and play the Ouija board.
1. Holy Ghost! The DFA band, that is (hence the exclamation mark) - not the old British techno band on Tresor. Their eponymous debut album hasn't only become the soundtrack of every festival in the world; it also holds some memorable disco-pop gems.
2. Ghostface The most in shape Wu-Tang rapper was one of the first black artists to use spectral references for his name.
3. Ghostpoet Street poet in the mist, Ghostpoet is this year's big revelation in London urban music. Under the wings of the Brownswood label, his street tales drenched in dub and sinuous electronica have stolen our hearts.
4. Cherry Ghost The Bolton band has two efficient indie-rock albums out on Heavenly: “Thirst For Romance” (2007) and “Beneath This Burning Shoreline” (2010). If elegance and romanticism is your thing, this band's for you.
5. Former Ghosts Some kind of suicidal supergroup. The band is formed by Freddy Ruppert, the man from This Song Is A Mess But So I Am, with regular collaborations by happy campers like Jamie Stewart (Xiu Xiu) and Zola Jesus. They've got two albums out on Upset The Rhythm!, which sound like a cross of Baudelaire and The Cure.
6. Simian Ghost Swedish, livid, languid: they make the kind of electronic pop that oscillates between melancholy and euphoria, much like fellow northerners jj, Air France and The Knife. They have one album out, “Infinite Traffic Everywhere”.
7. Ghost Mice Apparently inactive at the moment, Ghost Mice mix American folk references with the energy of punk - without being a cowpunk band, if such a thing exists.
8. Amanda Ghost The last thing we heard from Amanda Ghost - after her originally titled “Ghost Stories” (2000) - was the single “Time Machine”, with Boy George, before he went to prison. Also, she recently tried to make a comeback with her mass consumption pop.
9. Jukebox The Ghost “Everything Under The Sun” (Yep Roc Records, 2010) was one of those small records blown up by the hyperactive music blogs, enveloping Jukebox The Ghost in a small indie hype. The bubble didn't last too long, of course.
10. Team Ghost The big ghostly band of the moment - with their first album, “We All Shine” (Sonic Cathedral, 2011), about to be released. Nicholas Fromageau is French, dark, moves among shoegaze clouds and is a member of M83. A whirlwind of passion. We don't know if ghosts exist. But more artists than we expected use the word “ghost” in their name. Here's a selection.